An Old Guy in the Waiting Room Told a Big Fish Story

I don’t know what it is, but the minute I make eye contact with an old person, they just start talking to me. Today, I had the pleasure of talking to a gnarly old gentleman, here for his wife’s lung cancer treatment, and very concerned about his granddaughter, who enjoys driving while drunk – with her kid in the car.

In one of his lighter moments, he told me a yarn about his trip to Mud Lake.

I don’t know how to get there. I just follow the smell of the fish.

That day, I was fishing so long, I ran out of bait. I went back to the dock and stepped onto land. Right at my feet was a great big rattlesnake with a frog in its mouth.

I knew frogs were great for fishing, so I stepped on the back of the snake’s head and took the frog from its mouth. Then, I wondered how I was going to get my foot off the snake without getting bit, so I reached back into my boat, grabbed my bottle of Jim Beam, and poured it into the snake’s mouth. He laid down and went to sleep, so I got back in the boat and used the frog for bait, catching northern’s and any number of big fish.

The minute I ran out of frog bait, I felt something rub up against my leg. I looked down to see the snake – two frog’s in his mouth, looking up at me.

As I laughed heartily, he reached back for another joke:

Hey! Did you hear how big the one-armed man’s fish was?!

Humanity can be fun, sometimes.

My Wife is At Mayo, Undergoing Ablation

She has AVNRT. The Mayo Clinic knows what the problem is. This is good.

After a few cancellations, the doctors were able to schedule her for today, April 19. The procedure is simple:

Send a catheter up through the groin. Send another one through the neck. Get both catheters to the heart. Induce the heart to do weird shit, like beat at 220 bpm. Find the naughty spots. Burn them. Induce another episode. Watch. Burn. Ablate. Rinse Repeat.

After it’s all done, her heart should be perfect.

I’m sitting here in the waiting room…waiting.

Is Repeating Kindergarten a Good Idea?

IMG_3021My Freak, aka, Analisse, who turns 6-years-old at the end of this month, is struggling a bit in school. She is the last of our six, my favorite (“favourite” for my Canuck readers…looking at you, Erin, Rebecca, Gloria, Joel, Chantelle, etc) by a long shot, and is the only one of my squirts who attended a full year of pre-school.

As a wild child, she had a hard time learning to focus on her own work in the classroom, at the beginning of the school year. Her teacher, who is the best teacher I have ever met, this side of the sun, took a liking to her, which is impossible to avoid, and worked her rear end off, to get her to hone those skills.

But she struggled with Kindergarten subject matter. In fact, at Spring Parent/Teacher conferences, her teacher had a packet all prepared to show us how worried she was about The Freak, and was going to recommend that she repeat Kindergarten. Her argument was, “If she’s going to repeat a grade, Kindergarten is the grade to repeat.”

But, in true Freak fashion, that was the week that Analisse decided to take off with her studies. All her teachers said the same thing:

I have no idea what is happening, but things just….clicked this week.

So her teacher softened her recommendation, still vying for a repeat, but in a more ‘wait-and-see’ mode. The school put together a team of six specialists to assess her and to find her a path with special education, if necessary. We are also putting her in Summer School, which she’ll love.

So, my question:

Would you have your daughter repeat Kindergarten, especially when there is the chance she won’t really need to, even if she may struggle a bit in the years ahead?

Great Comments on My Last Transgender Post

In my last post, I highlighted the absurdity of transgender “bathroom bills.” Two people commented and made some very good points. I’ll let them speak.

Travis Chandler says:

The rule of fear has an astounding, and dare I say, growing power in the US. There is a disheartening tendency towards relying on base rhetoric and emotional appeal, flying in the face of logic, reason, and research when it comes to our self-governance. Having said that, allow me to continue the trend for a moment in saying this: When people go to the bathroom, it’s usually to go to the bathroom, not hunt up unsuspecting children to club over the head and drag off to sexually brutalize. It continually astounds me that the Abrahamic god could be completely nonplussed to traipse around day and night with Adam and Eve in the buff yet be so insistent upon modesty when it comes to common biological function in the 21st century. Perhaps the ultimate irony (and the last cheap shot I’ll take here, I promise) would be that the religious community (I’m happy that I’m exaggerating in lumping them in together here, knowing that there are a good number of sensible believers out there in regard to social issues) is so fervently up-in-arms about the fear of sexual assault of children in the bathroom from people who have no established propensity towards carrying out the crime for which they are being deemed guilty, yet are so silent and complacent in the face of the fact that the institution from which many of them derive their beliefs has been shown, time and again, to be guilty of the very thing they fear.

Vivec says:

Well, speaking as a trans person well, I personally like this sort of argument. It’s pretty much just a reductio ad absurdum. Even if there was this threat of bathroom predation, this bill would do nothing to fix it.

If the law is going to mandate that very masculine-looking afab trans people have to use the women’s restroom, it defeats the whole argument that “men will just put on dresses to sneak in”.

Why would they have to bother with the dresses, when the fellow in the picture looks the same as your average cis dude? The law is literally unenforceable without inspecting everyone’s genitals and would, if anything, make it easier for some cis dude to gain entry to the women’s restroom.

I adore my readers.

Putting Transgender Bathroom Bills Into Perspective

The true narrative:

I don’t want me or my child to have to be uncomfortable in a public restroom, when a man, who used to be a woman, comes in to pee, or the other way around. When people are different from me, I’m scared.

The fake narrative:

A straight pedophile or rapist will attack me in the bathroom, dressing as the opposite sex, just to do this terrible deed.

A picture of a person who will now walk into your female bathrooms, causing your delicate flower constitutions to necessitate the vapors:

menshealth16n-5-web

Didn’t think about that now, did you? No. You just thought that women-looking women would now be forced to use the female bathroom and…go ahead and fill in the blank.

Morons.

Today is National Grilled Cheese Day

tomato-soup-grilled-cheese-sandwich-large-51094I know what I’m making for supper tonight. Only problem, as any parent knows, the minute you have a great idea for a meal, it is imperative to entertain the reality of that situation – that you’re the only one excited about it currently and forever.

You’ll slave away, making the perfect grilled cheese from Bongards sandwich cheese and Kwik Trip white bread. You’ve perfectly popped open a few tomato soup cans,  heated the contents on the stove, lovingly stirring in whole milk, a little bit at a time, so as not to curdle the stuff.

Then, once everything is ready, the piping hot sammiches and soup hit the table, meeting the turned up noses of your kids. Sure, they’re grateful little wretches when you half-ass a meal, but the moment you put time into it, they have this weird little radar, causing them to conspire with their siblings to make Dad feel like shit.

But I do it anyway on that happenstance day where they inhale a meal and then, with mouth full of food, look at me with shining eyes and declare, “Daddy! This is the best meal ever! Your the best dad in the world!” (Being young yet, I assume they butcher “you’re” in speech, as well as written text).

And then I go run for President and tell everyone, “I know foods. I have the best foods!

My Bride Has Left Me

grizzly5She went to Colorado, alone, to stay in the mountains. She’ll be back on Friday, late. I told her to bring mace for bears, but she laughed at me. She is a black belt in Tae Kwon Do, so she’ll probably be okay.

 

North Carolina’s Bigoted Bathroom Bill: Amended

The following is the text of the North Carolina House Bill 2, which provides clarification for “single-sex, multiple occupancy bathrooms,” along with employment regulation consistency. Only, I swapped out the words “single-sex” for “single race.” There is no difference.

GENERAL ASSEMBLY OF NORTH CAROLINA
SECOND EXTRA SESSION 2016

HOUSE BILL 2

Short Title: Public Facilities Privacy & Security Act. (Public)
Sponsors: Representatives Bishop, Stam, Howard, and Steinburg (Primary Sponsors).

March 23, 2016

A BILL TO BE ENTITLED

AN ACT TO PROVIDE FOR SINGLE-SEXRACE MULTIPLE OCCUPANCY BATHROOM AND CHANGING FACILITIES IN SCHOOLS AND PUBLIC AGENCIES AND TO CREATE STATEWIDE CONSISTENCY IN REGULATION OF EMPLOYMENT AND PUBLIC ACCOMMODATIONS.

Whereas, the North Carolina Constitution directs the General Assembly to provide for the organization and government of all cities and counties and to give cities and counties such powers and duties as the General Assembly deems advisable in Section 1 of Article VII of the North Carolina Constitution; and

Whereas, the North Carolina Constitution reflects the importance of statewide laws related to commerce by prohibiting the General Assembly from enacting local acts regulating labor, trade, mining, or manufacturing in Section 24 of Article II of the North Carolina Constitution; and

Whereas, the General Assembly finds that laws and obligations consistent statewide for all businesses, organizations, and employers doing business in the State will improve intrastate commerce; and

Whereas, the General Assembly finds that laws and obligations consistent statewide for all businesses, organizations, and employers doing business in the State benefit the businesses, organizations, and employers seeking to do business in the State and attracts new businesses, organizations, and employers to the State; Now, therefore,

The General Assembly of North Carolina enacts:

PART I. SINGLE-SEXRACE MULTIPLE OCCUPANCY BATHROOM AND CHANGING FACILITIES

SECTION 1.1. G.S. 115C-47 is amended by adding a new subdivision to read:
“(63) To Establish Single-SexRace Multiple Occupancy Bathroom and Changing Facilities. – Local boards of education shall establish single-sex multiple occupancy bathroom and changing facilities as provided in G.S. 115C-521.2.”

SECTION 1.2. Article 37 of Chapter 115C of the General Statutes is amended by adding a new section to read:
Ҥ 115C-521.2. Single-sexrace multiple occupancy bathroom and changing facilities.
(a) Definitions. – The following definitions apply in this section:
(1) Biological sexrace. – The physical condition of being male or femalewhite or another color, which is stated on a person’s birth certificate.

(2) Multiple occupancy bathroom or changing facility. – A facility designed or designated to be used by more than one person at a time where students may be in various states of undress in the presence of other persons. A multiple occupancy bathroom or changing facility may include, but is not limited to, a school restroom, locker room, changing room, or shower room.

(3) Single occupancy bathroom or changing facility. – A facility designed or designated to be used by only one person at a time where students may be in various states of undress. A single occupancy bathroom or changing facility may include, but is not limited to, a single stall restroom designated as unisex or for use based on biological sex.

(b) Single-SexRace Multiple Occupancy Bathroom and Changing Facilities. – Local boards of education shall require every multiple occupancy bathroom or changing facility that is designated for student use to be designated for and used only by students based on their biological sexrace.

(c) Accommodations Permitted. – Nothing in this section shall prohibit local boards of education from providing accommodations such as single occupancy bathroom or changing facilities or controlled use of faculty facilities upon a request due to special circumstances, but in no event shall that accommodation result in the local boards of education allowing a student to use a multiple occupancy bathroom or changing facility designated under subsection (b) of this section for a sexrace other than the student’s biological sexrace.

(d) Exceptions. – This section does not apply to persons entering a multiple occupancy bathroom or changing facility designated for use by the opposite sex another race:
(1) For custodial purposes.
(2) For maintenance or inspection purposes.
(3) To render medical assistance.
(4) To accompany a student needing assistance when the assisting individual is an employee or authorized volunteer of the local board of education or the student’s parent or authorized caregiver.
(5) To receive assistance in using the facility.
(6) To accompany a person other than a student needing assistance.
(7) That has been temporarily designated for use by that person’s biological sex.”

SECTION 1.3. Chapter 143 of the General Statutes is amended by adding a new 31 Article to read:

“Single-SexRace Multiple Occupancy Bathroom and Changing Facilities.
Ҥ 143-760. Single-sexrace multiple occupancy bathroom and changing facilities.
(a) Definitions. – The following definitions apply in this section:
(1) Biological sexrace. – The physical condition of being male or female white or another race, which is stated on a person’s birth certificate.
(2) Executive branch agency. – Agencies, boards, offices, departments, and institutions of the executive branch, including The University of North Carolina and the North Carolina Community College System.
(3) Multiple occupancy bathroom or changing facility. – A facility designed or designated to be used by more than one person at a time where persons may be in various states of undress in the presence of other persons. A multiple occupancy bathroom or changing facility may include, but is not limited to, a restroom, locker room, changing room, or shower room.
(4) Public agency. – Includes any of the following:
a. Executive branch agencies.
b. All agencies, boards, offices, and departments under the direction and control of a member of the Council of State.
c. “Unit” as defined in G.S. 159-7(b)(15).
d. “Public authority” as defined in G.S. 159-7(b)(10).
e. A local board of education.
f. The judicial branch.
g. The legislative branch.
h. Any other political subdivision of the State.
(5) Single occupancy bathroom or changing facility. – A facility designed or designated to be used by only one person at a time where persons may be in various states of undress. A single occupancy bathroom or changing facility may include, but is not limited to, a single stall restroom designated as unisexuni-race or for use based on biological sexrace.
(b) Single-SexRace Multiple Occupancy Bathroom and Changing Facilities. – Public agencies shall require every multiple occupancy bathroom or changing facility to be designated for and only used by persons based on their biological sexrace.
(c) Accommodations Permitted. – Nothing in this section shall prohibit public agencies from providing accommodations such as single occupancy bathroom or changing facilities upon a person’s request due to special circumstances, but in no event shall that accommodation result in the public agency allowing a person to use a multiple occupancy bathroom or changing facility designated under subsection (b) of this section for a sex other than the person’s biological sex.
(d) Exceptions. – This section does not apply to persons entering a multiple occupancy bathroom or changing facility designated for use by the opposite sex:
(1) For custodial purposes.
(2) For maintenance or inspection purposes.
(3) To render medical assistance.
(4) To accompany a person needing assistance.
(5) That has been temporarily designated for use by that person’s biological sex.”

PART II. STATEWIDE CONSISTENCY IN LAWS RELATED TO EMPLOYMENT AND CONTRACTING

SECTION 2.1. G.S. 95-25.1 reads as rewritten:
Ҥ 95-25.1. Short title and legislative purpose.purpose; local governments preempted.

(a) This Article shall be known and may be cited as the “Wage and Hour Act.”
(b) The public policy of this State is declared as follows: The wage levels of employees, hours of labor, payment of earned wages, and the well-being of minors are subjects of concern requiring legislation to promote the general welfare of the people of the State without jeopardizing the competitive position of North Carolina business and industry. The General Assembly declares that the general welfare of the State requires the enactment of this law under the police power of the State.
(c) The provisions of this Article supersede and preempt any ordinance, regulation, resolution, or policy adopted or imposed by a unit of local government or other political subdivision of the State that regulates or imposes any requirement upon an employer pertaining to compensation of employees, such as the wage levels of employees, hours of labor, payment of earned wages, benefits, leave, or well-being of minors in the workforce. This subsection shall not apply to any of the following:

(1) A local government regulating, compensating, or controlling its own employees.
(2) Economic development incentives awarded under Part 2H of Article 10 of Chapter 143B of the General Statutes.
(3) Economic development incentives awarded under Article 1 of Chapter 158 of the General Statutes.
(4) A requirement of federal community development block grants.
(5) Programs established under G.S. 153A-376 or G.S. 160A-456.”

SECTION 2.2. G.S. 153A-449(a) reads as rewritten:
“(a) Authority. – A county may contract with and appropriate money to any person, association, or corporation, in order to carry out any public purpose that the county is authorized by law to engage in. A county may not require a private contractor under this section to abide by regulations or controls on the contractor’s employment practices or mandate or prohibit the provision of goods, services, or accommodations to any member of the public as a condition of bidding on a contract or a qualification-based selection, except as otherwise required by State law.”

SECTION 2.3. G.S. 160A-20.1(a) reads as rewritten:
“(a) Authority. – A city may contract with and appropriate money to any person, association, or corporation, in order to carry out any public purpose that the city is authorized by law to engage in. A city may not require a private contractor under this section to abide by regulations or controls on the contractor’s employment practices or mandate or prohibit the provision of goods, services, or accommodations to any member of the public as a condition of bidding on a contract or a qualification-based selection, except as otherwise required by State law.”

PART III. PROTECTION OF RIGHTS IN EMPLOYMENT AND PUBLIC ACCOMMODATIONS

SECTION 3.1. G.S. 143-422.2 reads as rewritten:
Ҥ 143-422.2. Legislative declaration.
(a) It is the public policy of this State to protect and safeguard the right and opportunity of all persons to seek, obtain and hold employment without discrimination or abridgement on account of race, religion, color, national origin, age, biological sex or handicap, yet allowing the discrimination of those not listed herein, by employers which regularly employ 15 or more employees.
(b) It is recognized that the practice of denying employment opportunity and discriminating in the terms of employment foments domestic strife and unrest, deprives the State of the fullest utilization of its capacities for advancement and development, and substantially and adversely affects the interests of employees, employers, and the public in general.
(c) The General Assembly declares that the regulation of discriminatory practices in employment is properly an issue of general, statewide concern, such that this Article and other applicable provisions of the General Statutes supersede and preempt any ordinance, regulation, resolution, or policy adopted or imposed by a unit of local government or other political subdivision of the State that regulates or imposes any requirement upon an employer pertaining to the regulation of discriminatory practices in employment, except such regulations applicable to personnel employed by that body that are not otherwise in conflict with State law.”

SECTION 3.2. G.S. 143-422.3 reads as rewritten:
Ҥ 143-422.3. Investigations; conciliations.
The Human Relations Commission in the Department of Administration shall have the authority to receive charges of discrimination from the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission pursuant to an agreement under Section 709(b) of Public Law 88-352, as amended by Public Law 92-261, and investigate and conciliate charges of discrimination. Throughout this process, the agency shall use its good offices to effect an amicable resolution of the charges of discrimination. This Article does not create, and shall not be construed to create or support, a statutory or common law private right of action, and no person may bring any civil action based upon the public policy expressed herein.”

SECTION 3.3. Chapter 143 of the General Statutes is amended by adding a new Article to read:
“Article 49B
“Equal Access to Public Accommodations.
Ҥ 143-422.10. Short title.
This Article shall be known and may be cited as the Equal Access to Public Accommodations Act.
Ҥ 143-422.11. Legislative declaration.
(a) It is the public policy of this State to protect and safeguard the right and opportunity of all individuals within the State to enjoy fully and equally the goods, services, facilities, privileges, advantages, and accommodations of places of public accommodation free of discrimination because of race, religion, color, national origin, or biological sex, yet allowing the discrimination of those not listed herein, provided that designating multiple or single occupancy bathrooms or changing facilities according to biological sex, as defined in G.S. 143-760(a)(1), (3), and (5), shall not be deemed to constitute discrimination.
(b) The General Assembly declares that the regulation of discriminatory practices in places of public accommodation is properly an issue of general, statewide concern, such that this Article and other applicable provisions of the General Statutes supersede and preempt any ordinance, regulation, resolution, or policy adopted or imposed by a unit of local government or other political subdivision of the State that regulates or imposes any requirement pertaining to the regulation of discriminatory practices in places of public accommodation.

Ҥ 143-422.12. Places of public accommodation Рdefined.
For purposes of this Article, places of public accommodation has the same meaning as defined in G.S. 168A-3(8), but shall exclude any private club or other establishment not, in fact, open to the public.

Ҥ 143-422.13. Investigations; conciliations.
The Human Relations Commission in the Department of Administration shall have the authority to receive, investigate, and conciliate complaints of discrimination in public accommodations. Throughout this process, the Human Relations Commission shall use its good offices to effect an amicable resolution of the complaints of discrimination. This Article does not create, and shall not be construed to create or support, a statutory or common law private right of action, and no person may bring any civil action based upon the public policy expressed herein.”

PART IV. SEVERABILITY

SECTION 4. If any provision of this act or its application is held invalid, the invalidity does not affect other provisions or applications of this act that can be given effect without the invalid provisions or application, and to this end the provisions of this act are severable. If any provision of this act is temporarily or permanently restrained or enjoined by judicial order, this act shall be enforced as though such restrained or enjoined provisions had not been adopted, provided that whenever such temporary or permanent restraining order or injunction is stayed, dissolved, or otherwise ceases to have effect, such provisions shall have full force and effect.

PART V. EFFECTIVE DATE 

SECTION 5. This act is effective when it becomes law and applies to any action taken on or after that date, to any ordinance, resolution, regulation, or policy adopted or amended on or after that date, and to any contract entered into on or after that date. The provisions of Sections 2.1, 2.2, 2.3, 3.1, 3.2, and 3.3 of this act supersede and preempt any ordinance, resolution, regulation, or policy adopted prior to the effective date of this act that purports to regulate a subject matter preempted by this act or that violates or is not consistent with this act, and such ordinances, resolutions, regulations, or policies shall be null and void as of the effective date of this act.

Boyfriends and Hangovers

“My boyfriend…blah blah blah…”

“Saturday night, I drank until I was blue in the face. Then I crashed. I don’t remember crashing, but I did. I woke up at about noon and didn’t even have a hangover…..,” the conversation floats off down the massive atrium space walkways as she rattles her high heels on the tiles, her companion, giggling at all the normal laugh lines of the party prone.

This is the talk at work. Maybe I’m getting old. I can’t handle this kind of talk anymore. I need meat and potatoes. Hell, even a vegan steak will do.

Wait…shit. Dammit. My oldest is nearly 14. God help me, which I know he won’t, being he can’t, but….damn. I hope she keeps her head in her books and continues to talk to me about cats, horses, dogs, and her hatred of spiders. Normally, my Renaya can’t get a word out of her mouth without singing it. That should scare potential suitors away. And it’s hard to drink when you’re trying to sing.

One Reason Why America is a Culture of Death

83% of Americans claim they are Christian. This, from a poll nearly a year ago. So let’s examine some lovely hymn stanzas from this most wonderful of faiths.

Are you washed in the blood,
In the soul-cleansing blood of the Lamb?
Are your garments spotless? Are they white as snow?
Are you washed in the blood of the Lamb?

Blood. Christianity requires it, derived from the Jewish tradition of sacrifice. Jesus, the perfect lamb, spotless. Exactly what God required, but mankind was incapable of providing. But really, imagine this image: Taking the blood of a human being (let’s ignore the god-man for right now) and pouring it over yourself.

Years I spent in vanity and pride,
Caring not my Lord was crucified,
Knowing not it was for me He died
On Calvary.

It’s your fault Jesus was brutally murdered. You sinned. You’re liking of stuff and also thinking that you’re a good person, you prideful filth. Calvary, here, for the 17% who don’t claim Christianity as their faith of choice, is the hill upon which the cross stood that Jesus was nailed to. His death was both predicted and necessary. You killed him. Not only did you kill him, but you are still the reason why he died. You aren’t accepting the wonderful gift he gave you by allowing himself to be mutilated for you. You must agree with this death faith and pour blood over yourself too.

Alas, and did my Saviour bleed?
And did my Sovereign die?
Would He devote that sacred head
For someone such as I?

At the cross, at the cross where I first saw the light,
And the burden of my heart rolled away,
It was there by faith I received my sight,
And now I am happy all the day!

Was it for crimes that I have done,
He suffered on the tree?
Amazing pity! grace unknown!
And love beyond degree!

But drops of grief can ne’er repay
The debt of love I owe:
Here, Lord, I give myself away,
‘Tis all that I can do!

I just had to copy that entire hymn. Imagine, if you will, rejoicing and dancing at the idea that someone was brutally murdered so you can be free of imaginary badness. Not only that, but the rejoicing is about that murdered person’s suffering! Not only was Jesus killed in the most imaginative way for killing someone, but he was forced to suffer while doing the dying. And this hymn rejoices in that suffering, even singing about the singer’s heart being continually happy, because of the death of Christ.

Aww. It were my fault I kilt’ ‘im. But damn! That’s awesome! Thanks Jesus!!!!

I’ll digress, but the point here has been made. Christianity is nothing without death. Sure, one can point to the fact that death was necessary for there to have been a resurrection, but that’s just a head-fake argument. Death was not necessary at all. You’ve been lied to.